JULIA CHILD'S BOEUF BOURGUIGNON

After I saw Julie & Julia I wanted the Boeuf Bourguignon so badly but it was so hot out I tried to wait until winter. But I couldn't wait and made it on the hottest day of the summer. Wore my pearls and all. Huge success. If you don't want to make your own beef stock some butcher shops sell good quality homemade broth. We buy ours from Cumbrae Butchers. We like to use blade or boneless short ribs for stewing beef. I served this with mashed potatoes and roasted carrots. The next day I served the leftovers with pappardelle noodles. This is adapted (slightly) from Mastering The Art of French Cooking (Knopf).

After I saw Julie & Julia I wanted the Boeuf Bourguignon so badly but it was so hot out I tried to wait until winter. But I couldn't wait and made it on the hottest day of the summer. Wore my pearls and all. Huge success. If you don't want to make your own beef stock some butcher shops sell good quality homemade broth. We buy ours from Cumbrae Butchers. We like to use blade or boneless short ribs for stewing beef. I served this with mashed potatoes and roasted carrots. The next day I served the leftovers with pappardelle noodles. This is adapted (slightly) from Mastering The Art of French Cooking (Knopf).

Makes 6 to 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 6 oz (175g) bacon, in one piece, cut into lardons (sticks 1/4"x 1 1/2")
  • 1 tbsp (25mL) olive oil
  • 4 lbs (2kg) stewing beef, cut into 2" (5cm) cubes (boneless blade or short ribs)
  • 2 carrots, thickly sliced
  • 2 onions, thickly sliced
  • 1 tsp (5mL) salt
  • 1/4 tsp (1mL) pepper
  • 2 tbsp (25mL) all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups (750mL) dry red wine
  • 3 cups (750mL) beef stock
  • 1 tbsp (15mL) tomato paste
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp (15mL) fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 24 small white onions
  • 3 tbsp (45mL) butter - divided
  • 1/2 cup (125mL) beef stock or water
  • 1 lb (500g) cremini mushrooms, quartered

Method

  1. Simmer bacon lardons in a pot of boiling water 5 to 10 minutes. Drain and pat dry.
  2. Heat olive oil in a large heavy casserole (like Le Cruset) and saute bacon on medium heat until lightly browned. Remove bacon and reserve. Heat pan with remaining oil in pan until almost smoking.
  3. Pat meat dry and add to hot pan in smallish batches. Brown well. (If you overcrowd the pan, the meat will not brown properly). As the batches are finished add meat to bacon.
  4. Add carrots and onions. Brown lightly. Discard any fat remaining in pan. Return beef and bacon to the casserole and toss with salt, pepper and flour.  Place casserole in a preheated 450 F (220C) oven for 5 minutes. Toss again and roast 5 minutes longer. Remove casserole and reduce oven to 325F (160C).
  5. Add wine and enough stock to barely cover meat. Add tomato paste, garlic, thyme, bay leaf and bacon. Bring to a simmer on top of the stove. I like to cover the meat directly with a round of parchment paper and then the lid. Place in the preheated 325F (160C) oven for 3 to 4 hours or until very tender.
  6. While beef is cooking, saute small white onions in a medium deep skillet in half the butter until lightly browned, cover with beef stock and cook, uncovered until onions are tender and liquid has evaporated. Saute mushrooms in a large skillet, in butter until browned and any liquid has evaporated. When meat is tender, add onions and mushrooms. Cook 10 minutes. Skim off any fat from stew and season to taste. (If there is too much liquid, cook uncovered until enough liquid evaporates. If it is too thick add more stock or water.) Top with sprigs of parsley. Yum.

JULIA CHILD'S BOEUF BOURGUIGNON

Find more of Bonnie's delicious recipes in her cookbooks: